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Two new Paint pattern discoveries help keep color in the breed

Photo above: Rachel Griffin Photography


Two new white-spotting patterns—W31 and W32—were discovered in 2021 and confirmed present in the Paint Horse breed. The discovery was made by researchers at APHA partner lab Etalon Diagnostics and published in the peer-reviewed Journal of Heredity.

These pattern genes, along with more than 12 other white-spotting patterns commonly found in Paints, can be used to help preserve the beloved white markings in the Paint breed and help Paints earn Regular Registry designation. The January/February 2022 Paint Horse Journal has more information about the discovery of W31 and W32.


  • Typically includes white markings with jagged borders distributed across the head, lower legs, belly and ventral body; some might be completely white with areas of pigmented coat/skin on the sheath, mane, ears and face, especially when combined with other white spotting pattern genes.
  • Confirmed in the Cookin Merada family; broader distribution is unknown.


  • Typically includes white markings on the limbs, belly spots and face
  • Confirmed in the Small Town Scandal family; appears to be found in several lines of Paints and Quarter Horses, and other breeds

Individual testing for the W31 and W32 pattern can be ordered via Etalon Diagnostics.

Learn more about RG-070.E (genetics-based) status changes for your Paint.


[Reprinting all or part of this news release is permitted, so long as credit is given to the Paint Horse Journal and a link provided back to apha.com.]


About APHA

The American Paint Horse Association is the world’s second-largest international equine breed association, registering more than a million horses in 59 nations and territories since it was founded in 1962. APHA promotes, preserves and provides meaningful experiences with Paint Horses.